In regions where agriculture is predominant, it’s common for people to unwind by taking a break from the trees and plants that surround them. Having spent all day in the countryside, they tend not to feel enthusiastic about going, say, to a park to relax. Samui has for generations been a farming area, and still is today, though to a lesser extent. Wherever you go you’ll see coconut trees, and really the entire island is one massive plantation. Therefore nobody ever thought to create a park here. Tourism however has overtaken farming and is crucial for the island’s revenue. That means that those who are now coming to the island seek all kinds of amenities, which includes parks. Paradise Park Farm came into being to fulfil this need, and over the years has become popular with both holidaymakers and residents.
It’s located right in the heart of the island, and is a special space dedicated to fun and relaxation. It’s big enough for most visitors to spend a good few hours here, if not the entire day. With opening hours being daily from 9:00 am until last admission at 5:00 pm, there’s plenty of time to come and enjoy what the park has to offer.
The drive there is a pleasure in its own right, but you won’t pass it on your travels as it’s some five kilometres in the island’s interior. It’s one of the rare chances to see the heart of the island; not many holidaymakers ever make it this far, as there are so few roads that go up into the middle of Samui.
To get to Paradise Park Farm, you’ll first need to go to Ban Saket, in the south-west of Samui. By the Chevrolet showroom, turn off the ring-road in the direction of the hills and follow the road. You’ll come to a military camp and a checkpoint, but don’t worry; the guards there will simply wave you through. Continue, following the signs for Paradise Park Farm.
The road’s easy to drive but don’t attempt it if your vehicle isn’t capable of long, quite steep hills. If you’re not in the mood for driving, this doesn’t mean to say that you’ll miss out on Paradise Park Farm. You can either phone ahead or book through any travel agent, and you’ll be picked up from your hotel, villa or resort.
The views get better and better as you go on up, and once at Paradise Park Farm itself, they’re nothing short of spectacular. You can look out to the distant Five Islands, glittering in the sea below. Closer at hand, you’ll see plunging valleys – the farm is located on the edge of one of them – filled with greenery typical of tropical rainforests. On the way up you’ll probably hear some of the incredibly loud jungle insects, and realize you’re in a very, very different world to that of the coastal plain down below.
Paradise Park Farm has its own zoo, and is home to a variety of birds and animals. The birds include parrots, lovebirds, parakeets and macaws. You’ll find some indoors, while others are to be found outside, either freely ranging around or tethered. Some of the birds have had their tail-feathers dyed with pastel hues to make them stand out. You can pet or feed the animals, and children love to have their photograph taken with them. You’ll also find a small deer park here at the farm.
There are a number of walkways that take visitors through and around the park. They’re clearly sign-posted and are unusually scenic. Depending on which way you go, expect to see beautiful flowers such as heliconia growing wild, and landscapes of rocks and trees that will have you reaching for your camera. You’ll find the occasional bower, overlooking a viewpoint, ideal for portrait photographs, so if you’re coming with your family, you should end up with some memorable shots.
Perhaps the biggest draw about Paradise Park Farm is that despite being inland, you can go for a swim. A beautiful pool awaits you near the entrance and is ideal for cooling off. There are sun loungers, too, making this a very relaxing spot. It’s popular with children, but be careful as it’s also deep enough for adults, and the management point out that if you’re a parent, you’ll need to accompany your children at all times.
At some point you’ll probably start to feel hungry. There’s a restaurant on the site, a wooden pavilion with a terrace that overlooks the valleys and sea beyond, and is a great location to sit down and have a drink, snack or meal. On the menu, you’ll find a good selection of Thai and international favourites. Children will like the menu, too, and there are plenty of dishes that’ll appeal, such as spaghetti bolognese, pizzas, or fish and chips. Parents may want to relax over a cocktail, and there are a variety of these too.
You’ve no doubt heard the expression ‘fun for all the family’ and know in most cases there’s of course no such thing: someone in that proverbial family is going to be gritting their teeth and wanting to be elsewhere. But Paradise Park Farm is really one of the few, happy exceptions. It’d be hard to think of someone who wouldn’t enjoy a visit here, as it’s so beautiful and exotic. It’ll make a good break from the beach, too, and for children will no doubt become an early memory of having a great time while on holiday.
For further information telephone +66 (0) 860 633 318 or +66 (0) 812 551 222